Cover image for Shoplifter
Cho, Michael (Illustrator), author, artist.
First Edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Pantheon Books, [2014]

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : chiefly color illustrations ; 22 cm
"Corinna Park used to have big plans. While studying English Literature in college, she imagined writing a successful novel and leading the ideal life of an author. After graduation, she moved to a big city and took a job at an advertising agency--just to pay off her student loans--but now she's worked in the same office for five years and the only thing she's written is ... copy. She longs for companionship (other than her cat), receives no satisfaction from her job, and feels numbed by the monotony of a life experienced through a series of screens. But whenever she shoplifts a magazine from the corner store near her apartment, she feels a little, what? A little more alive. Yet Corinna knows there must be something more to life, as she faces the question everyone of her generation is right now: how to find it?"--
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library FICTION Graphic Novel Central Library
Clarence Library FICTION Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
Collins Library FICTION Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
East Clinton Branch Library FICTION Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
Marilla Free Library FICTION Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
Julia Boyer Reinstein Library FICTION Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
Dudley Branch Library FICTION Graphic Novel Graphic Novels

On Order



Corrina Park used to have big plans.

Studying English literature in college, she imagined writing a successful novel and leading the idealized life of an author. But she's been working at the same advertising agency for the past five years and the only thing she's written is . . . copy. Corrina knows there must be more to life, but and she faces the same question as does everyone in her generation: how to find it?
Here is the brilliant debut graphic novel about a young woman's search for happiness and self-fulfillment in the big city.

(With two-color illustrations throughout.)

Author Notes

MICHAEL CHO is an illustrator, cartoonist, and writer whose previously published work includes Back Alleys and Urban Landscapes, a collection of sketches depicting Toronto's cityscape. Born in South Korea, he has lived in Canada since he was six.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Making something sad and empty look great is central to the work of both the creator and the main character of Shoplifter. Cho has an immaculate deco style reminiscent of a softer-edged Darwyn Cooke, with which he depicts the sad and empty life of Corinna Park, an ad-copy writer who is sick of making empty products sound beautiful and alluring. Corinna is an archetypal example of a twentysomething professional struck with malaise by the dawning realization that she's exchanged youthful dreams for real-world practicality. To help cope with this emptiness, Corinna has taken to carefully arranged acts of shoplifting, acts that ultimately lead to a confrontation with her outer world and her inner one. Although you can feel the bitter misanthropy and disappointment of Daniel Clowes and the social existentialism of Adrian Tomine prowling beneath the surface, Cho's ending basks in a somewhat amateurishly executed optimism. But in light of his recognizable characters and gorgeously produced images (his cityscapes in particular), it's impossible to be angered by it, and twentysomething professionals will find it all comfortingly alarming.--Karp, Jesse Copyright 2014 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

Corrina Park supplements her dead-end social life and mind-numbing urban existence with the thrill of shoplifting. It's not even particularly adventurous theft, self-described as both "small time" and "magazines only, honest." Between grumpily writing advertising copy for children's perfume and catering to the whims of a banshee-howling cat, Corrina sates herself with frozen dinners for one and second-guessing her own apathy. It's more a vignette than a novel, but illustrator Cho's debut is a funny and touching portrait of urban angst. What's exceptional is the eye-catching art in two colors, black and rose. The adept use of black ink delineates but does not complete the outlines of people and buildings; the rose tones shadow and spotlight, subtly drawing attention. Large swatches of rose or black physically define Corinna's distance, both enforced and self-imposed, from her world. The delicate ink line articulates the facial expressions, and the intricate background and character details tie the narrative together. With its appealing story and quirky heroine, Cho's debut is a visually electrifying, if minor, tale. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Library Journal Review

Cho (Back Alleys and Urban Landscapes), already a popular illustrator, proves that he's just as adept a storyteller in his first full-length project as both writer and artist. The story follows Corinna Park, an advertising copywriter jaded by the industry and frustrated at her failure to achieve her dream of becoming a novelist. She feels isolated, bitter, and alone; her only real joy in life is occasionally shoplifting magazines from the convenience store near her apartment. Where did it all go wrong? Can Corinna find happiness? Romance? The story might seem like straightforward urban ennui, but Cho uses Corinna's struggle to explore issues such as corporate culture and responsibility and the way that the intersection of consumerism and social media commodifies interpersonal relationships. Cho's style of illustration is reminiscent of Darwyn Cooke's-cinematic and filled with detail and expert uses of light and shade, especially in several cityscape spreads that you'll want to tear out and frame. Verdict A moving, beautifully drawn, and thought-provoking book perfect for fans of indie cinema, graphic design, illustration, and comics in the Adrian Tomine and Dan Clowes vein.-Thomas L. Batten, Grafton, VA (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Google Preview